After leaving Rome (full of pasta, pizza, and gelato), we took a short flight to Prague, a city that’s tremendously easy to fall in love with. Almost instantly, we were surrounded by picture perfect buildings along with a more quiet atmosphere that came at just the right time. Plus, you can walk this city in almost no time at all (relative to bigger cities like Rome), so it was refreshing to walk less and see more. We stayed extremely close to Old Town Square, which was perfect for people watching. We also happened to visit during an annual festival of Prague: Heart of Nations. We were guaranteed a show every night, which ranged from traditional African singers + dancers to this awesome group of five Russian women singing popular tunes from their country. I got into it. ;)
And then, there was the gelato of course. Coming from Rome, we couldn’t help but research all the best places for ice cream in Prague as to avoid withdrawal. Ha. One place that came up time after time was Angelato, which definitely did not disappoint. We visited this place at least four times (oops) and I was a mega fan of their vanilla (boring, I know). We actually stumbled upon this place (and many more) on a blog called Taste of Prague, which I wish I would have found sooner. They host food tours around the city and even rent out their beautiful apartment, too. If I’m lucky enough to go back, I’ll definitely be checking in with them!
As far as other food goes, we first tried Lokál, which came recommended by Taste of Prague. They have more traditional Czech food (and cheap beer!), which we enjoyed because mashed potatoes #FORTHEWIN. We actually ate here twice since they have several locations, but I personally enjoyed the one in Hamburk best (much brighter). The other place that we loved was Dish. They specialize in burgers, which was much welcomed after over a week of indulging in pizza + pasta. Very cool interior, too. ;) Both places had English menus available upon request, which I was so grateful for because although I try to at least understand some basics before I go anywhere, I felt completely lost with the Czech language.
On our last full day in the Czech Republic, we hopped on a bus for a day trip to Český Krumlov, a small Renaissance town (with castle) on the Unesco Heritage List (B&W photo above). It’s a small place, so you don’t really need much time there. We easily walked all of the alleyways, grabbed some take-away lunch, and visited a rather large park in about 1-2 hours tops. We ended the day with a small tour of the castle that overlooks the town. It was no Versailles by any means, but still a very beautiful and interesting place. :)
If I’m being honest, Prague wasn’t even really on my radar before this trip. But when I hopped onboard, my friends had already picked out the city and I’m SO glad they did! It’s full of beautiful architecture, tasty food, and locals that are humble and proud of where they live. There’s no need to rush through this city. Simply grab some ice cream (or I guess meat on a stick if that’s your thing), people watch, and enjoy your day. Sometimes it’s not about seeing ALL of the touristy things, but instead taking it easy + doing as the locals do. That was my biggest take away from this trip! Until next time, Europe … ♥
During our stay in Rome, we took a long day trip to The Amalfi Coast (and Pompeii), a place I’ve always wanted to visit. We booked this trip through Viator so that we didn’t have to worry about transporting ourselves there, something that I was grateful for. Plus, we had a guide along for the ride which made for interesting times. ;) We drove the entire Amalfi Coast road (which freaked out my Australian bus neighbors since they are used to driving on the other side of the road) along beautiful cliffs and stopped in the towns of Amalfi and Positano, my absolute favorite being the latter.
Because we didn’t have much time on the coast (seriously only about an hour), I don’t really have any recommendations to share other than to wander + get lost. These towns are so small that it’s easy to see most of it in a short period of time and find your way back to the main drag when need be. At one point in Positano, I saw a small staircase that lead straight down the side of a cliff, so I decided to follow it and see what happened. With my friends staying at the top, I skipped down the steps and stumbled upon some of the most beautiful home facades I’ve ever seen. The buildings were painted in all sorts of pastels, covered with plants, and featured unique architecture after every turn. I kept going and going, most likely trespassing, but enjoying my little adventure nonetheless.
While we were adventuring along The Amalfi Coast, I saw many backpackers who were most likely hiking between towns, something that I’ve been dying to do for awhile. I mean, how cool would that be? YES PLEASE. Because that way, you can literally eat all the pasta and gelato you want without feeling terribly guilty.
If you ever get a chance (even just a few hours), The Amalfi Coast is an absolutely breathtaking place to visit and take in. I would love to spend more time there, or even check out Cinque Terre (another coastal area). So we’ll see what happens! Until next time … ♥
After 25 hours of traveling on Saturday, I’m finally back home + settled in enough to share some photos with you all from our trip! As I mentioned before, this time away was very important for me, as I decided not to work whatsoever and just enjoy. After being so career focused and going going going for the last four years, I’m happy to say that this trip marked a significant shift in my ability to just be and was exactly what I needed.
I went on this trip with two of my good friends and had an absolute blast. They are both really great at documenting things and journaled along the way (something I’ve promised myself to do next time), but I’ll try my best to recount what happened as well as share some of my favorite moments + recommendations. :)
We spent a good portion of our 11 days away just wandering around and getting semi lost (but not really because my friend Lindsey who was with us is very familiar with Rome). Getting to know a city from beyond the walls of tourism is something that I look forward to in every new city I visit, so it was fun to explore all of the neighborhoods around Rome to see what they had to offer. On one of my favorite days, we began in the Trastevere neighborhood, then continued up to Aventine Hill. Here, we stumbled upon a rose garden, saw a beautiful view of the city from above, and walked straight into small churches along the way to the top that were absolutely beautiful.
Another one of my favorite things to do was eat gelato (duh). In fact, that happened 17 times during our entire trip and I’m definitely not sorry about it at all. ;) In Rome, my favorite Gelato Shops were Del Teatro (try the almond!) and Fatamorgana. But if I were going by flavor alone, I would definitely suggest trying the creamy vanilla at Flor. On our last day, we each got 4 scoops because it was just THAT good.
Beyond wandering, we did put our tourist hats on and visit some of the most popular sites in Rome, like the Colosseum, Vatican, and other various ruins that seem to be scattered everywhere. All in all, I was most impressed with The Vatican and being able to see first hand, all of the beautiful architecture and artwork that I learned about so many years ago in Art History class. It was breathtaking.
And of course we can’t forget about food. Being that Italian food is my favorite, I had high expectations for finding some “life changing” pasta dishes, which is exactly what happened. So, I’m going to share with you my top four of the trip. ;) First up, is the risotto at Chiostro Del Bramante. I had a pomodoro version while my friend chose the asparagus, both of which were amazing. For lunch, I also really enjoyed pizza from Pizzarium, located beyond The Vatican. It’s a bit of a trek to get there from the center of town, but it’s totally worth it and fun to feel like you’re eating where the locals do!
The last two I’ll share were my absolute favorites, both of which happened to be from the same restaurant, Osteria Dell’Anima. They have a great gnocchi in pomodoro sauce, which I never actually got, but did sample from across the table since my friend got it. It literally melts in your mouth. So that brings us to the very very best. Something that I think I’ll dream about for years to come until I can have it again. Whenever that may be. Again, it’s from Osteria Dell’Anima and features ravioli stuffed with cheese + pears, and topped with a creamy carrot sauce. This one, I’m telling you, was life changing. Please get it if you go there, I promise you won’t be let down! I even did an intense victory dance after eating it two nights in a row. The photo above also expresses how I felt … haha.
Oh Rome, I truly enjoyed getting to know you, eating all of the gelato in sight, and walking miles and miles through all of your beautiful alleyways. I know I’ll be back. It’s a must. ;) Part two will feature our day trip to the Amalfi Coast (!!!), which will also be followed up with our time in Prague, another wonderful spot to see. More soon!